Best Glion Balto X2 Alternative

Daniel Foley
Written By: Daniel Foley
Published on: 3/30/2024

The Glion Balto, an electric scooter designed for carrying stuff, has been the go-to scooter for city dwellers. Forget about loading up your back pack or carrying heavy bags, its ample basket can safely transport all sorts of items.

Like picking up a takeaway or groceries on the way home from work, small shopping trips, or running errands around your neighborhood.

But what if there's something even better waiting around the corner?

In this article, we'll explore the alternatives and see if we can find a match-or maybe even something that edges out the Balto. It's not just about replacing your ride; it's about upgrading your urban adventure.

From the Razor EcoSmart Cargo, with similar features, to the ultra-portable Unagi Voyager, is there something that can rival the Balto?

Glion Balto X2

Source: Glion

Glion Balto X2

Nebraska-based, Probity Cell LLP - operating as Glion Electric Scooter - was founded in 2012. It's range of e scooters launched with the Ion SmartScooter in 2014, successfully followed by well known mobility scooter, the Mini and popular urban performers, Dolly and Dolly XL.

The Glion Balto model was launched in the spring of 2021, and 12 months later, we saw the upgraded X2.

Performance

Like all the best electric scooters on road and sidewalk, the Balto is built for urban daily life. Particularly useful for riders who need an affordable electric scooter for everyday, practical mobility and convenience. Above all, giving you a safe, reliable and comfortable commute.

Balto X2 Motor

Source: Glion

Motor and speed

Balto X2 is equipped with a powerful motor on the front wheelhub, giving:

  • 500 watts (continuous | 750 watt peak output). A level of motor force not always standard across a wide range of e scooter purely designed for everyday, reliable urban commuting.

Speed Modes

And just like almost all electric scooters out there, you have a set of capped speed modes too. Speed modes are designed to:

  • Match your ideal speed to riding conditions
  • Help save energy and extend range

ECO Mode (S - setting): Top speed 18km/h (11mph)

TURBO Mode (F - setting): Top speed 28km/h (17mph)

The Balto's maximum speed of 28km/h (17mph) is an ideal cruise control pace. And well within the 40.2 km/h (25 mph) legal state limits for e scooters allowed on US roads.

Acceleration

You may experience a nanosec of hesitancy at the off. But once it gets going Balto can hit top speed in around 14 seconds.

Performance always depends on factors like battery charge, rider weight, ground surface, tire pressure and wind resistance.

Hill climbs

Packing a 500 watt motor enables the Glion Balto X2 to handle hill climbs of:

  • 12 - 15 per cent gradients - above the standard e scooter minimum of 10 per cent.

TOP TIP: Depending on how steep the incline and rider weight, your scooter may need a kickstart.

  • 12 - 19 km/h (8 -12 mph), on average - can be maintained to make it over an incline. Which is on par with other electric scooters in its class.

Components

Tires

Glion Balto X2 comes with:

  • 12in (diameter) x 3in (width) pneumatic tires (air-filled)

Most scooters tend to be fitted with tires of between 8.5in to 10in in diameter.

Here Glion definitely aims to give that extra cushion to ride quality. Even without suspension, these uniquely large size pneumatic tires are stable and durable enough to soak up the bumps and cracks of precinct pavements. And sail over small pot holes in road tarmac.

TOP TIP: Keep both tires pumped up to max pressure for maintaining range.

Brakes

Source: Glion

Brakes

This electric scooter may not be an urban speed demon but Glion have installed both a front and rear disc brake to the Balto X2. The ability to have total control on every ride, even in low speed ECO mode, is essential.

Travelling in TURBO mode - at an average speed of 24.1 km/h (15 miles per hour) - the Glion Balto has a stopping distance of around 9.7 meters (32 feet).

Glion Balto X2 Lights

Source: Glion

Lights

Glion Scooter have given Balto X2 an upgraded lighting system, consisting of:

  • High-powered headlight - fitted low on the stem just above the front wheel fender.
  • Rear red brake light - large, vertical capsule shape, also low on rear wheel fender.
  • Turn signals - amber yellow 'strip light' indicators running the entire length, left and right hand side of the deck.

The headlight throws a defined circle of light on the immediate ground in front.

TOP TIP: To gain wider illumination, it's generally recommended to add a second headlight, high up on the stem just below the handlebars.

Battery and range

Along with power and speed, any rider's list of must-haves is sure to include saving battery life for extended range. Here the Glion Balto X2 offers a great solution - a swappable battery.

The X2 comes with:

  • 36V/10.5 Ah Samsung battery (378 Watt hours)

On a single charge of 5 hours, via the 2A charger, you would normally have a maximum range of 32 km (20 miles). But Glion can give you double that distance - by simply swapping out the battery for another whenever you need the extra range.

The scooter is built to house the battery in the stem not within the deck.

Inverter option

A further new feature is the option of adding an inverter - which converts battery power (DC) into a higher voltage alternating current (AC). The inverter turns your battery into a 500 watt AC portable power station.

If you're always heading out of town, or making lots of short trips in one day, the Balto X2 gives you the option to have extra juice to handle just about everything.

TOP TIP: Constant stopping and starting can use up energy quicker than an unbroken ride.

With a battery lifespan of 1000+ cycles, you can expect 3-5 years at least of very little maintenance.

Handlebar control

A straight, no-nonsense 24 inch handlebar gives you solid cockpit control. No small fiddly buttons here. To match the hi-grip rubber with its distinctive pattern enclosing each end the Balto X2 sports firm, chunky controls.

Left hand side:

Hand brake - squeeze to operate disc brake, which automatically causes rear brake lights to flash.

  • Speed mode dial - F for FAST and S for SLOW (Eco).
  • Turning signal - switch left or right and corresponding deck side light will flash when turning. Return to middle neutral position after turn completed.
  • Horn - Activate by pressing horn once.
  • Rear view mirror - also foldable when folding scooter down.

Right hand side:

  • On/Off power button - to switch ON, press once. To switch OFF, press and hold for 2 seconds.
  • Battery indicator - most accurate reading when motor is switched off: Green light off - 20 per cent charge left | Yellow light off - 5 per cent charge left.
  • Head Light/Rear Light On/Off - Scooter rear light always ON when power is turned on.
  • Accelerator - Increase pressure on throttle to raise speed.

Build quality and load capacity

One look at the pumped up, muscular build tells you - Glian Balto is made for the rigours of daily transit across city pavements and tarmac.

Frame

The Balto is made from a 6061-T6 aircraft grade steel/aluminum alloy, powder-coated. Making this machine not only exceptionally lightweight and strong - capable of carrying up to 115 kgs (255 lbs)- but also water resistant.

Build quality and load capacity

Source: Glion

Among the unique accessories are the rear rack and large basket, which can carry up to a weight limit of 12kg (26lbs), ideal for an impulse stop and buy.

Glion Balto X2 Deck

Source: Glion

Deck

Glion Balto comes with a sturdy 40.4 cm (17.5in) x 23 cm (9in) deck. The addition of a securing post at the deck rear offers you the option of:

  • Boosting your riding comfort by fitting a large seat, measuring 30cm(12in) x 20cm (8in)

Ideal for longer distances, thanks to the swappable battery!

Glion Balto X2 Portability

Source: Glion

Portability

If there is one downside among all the handy features and accessories it could be the unusual folding mechanism. Which may take seconds longer than normal to complete.

Glion Balto X2 folds down:

From - 122 x 112 x 61cm (48 x 44 x 24in)

To

Folded -122 x 61 x 38cm (48 x 24 x 15in)

Weighing in at 16.7kgs (37lbs) - including the battery - the Balto is more a mid range load to handle. However, once folded down and safely secured, you easily pull it along in its own wheeled rear rack.

Specifications

  • Weight: 16.7kgs (37lbs)
  • Folded dimensions: 122 x 61 x 38cm (48 x 24 x 15in)
  • Motor power (continuous): 500 watts | 750 watts (peak)
  • Top speed: 28km/h (17mph)
  • Travel Distance: 32 km (20 miles)
  • Battery capacity: 378Wh
  • Battery recharge time: 5 hours
  • Max rider weight: 115 kgs (255 lbs)
  • Brake type: Front wheel and Rear wheel - mechanical disc
  • Tire type: 12in pneumatic (air-filled)
  • Built-in lights: LED headlight/Rear red tail light & turn signals in deck
  • Water resistance: IP54 ( resistant to water splashes from any direction)

In a Nutshell

Glion Balto X2 is an urban commuting scooter - and then some! Not only do you get a reliable, steady-paced ride on huge10in tires and the option of sitting comfortably all the way. But also doubling your range with an instantly swappable battery.

Touting its big basket (sold separately) and wide deck for all types of small shopping trips and errands, this Glion model could be your best electric scooter bet. But is there another scooter out there that packs riding power with the practical?

Let's see....

Razor EcoSmart Cargo

Razor scooters - made today by California-based, RazorUSA - have been wowing riders ever since 2000, and the launch of their e scooter in 2003.

You may even think Razor Cargo (rolled out in the fall of 2022) looks a lot like an e bike or moped. Check that big frame and those massive wheels! Its rider owners call the Razor "tons of two-wheeled fun", with its 5 speed toggle - and you can choose to stand, sit or transport a loaded basket.

Razor EcoSmart Cargo

Source: Razor

Performance

Like the Glion Balto X2, this electric scooter is built for pacey urban riding, shopping loads and errands. Razor also performs a wizard trick, allowing fun trips for two around the hood. Your +1 riding, pillion style.

Razor EcoSmart Cargo Motor

Source: Razor

Motor and speed

Razor is equipped with a:

  • 1000 watt motor and rear wheel chain drive train* - delivering a top speed of up to 32 km/h (19.9 mph) - which beats out the 28km/h (17mph) of Glion Balto X2.

*Rear wheel chain-drive scooters are - powered by a motor connected to the rear axle via a chain. This is a powerful, high-torque system that pushes rather than pulls the scooter forward.

There is a Cons Pros factor in this set up:

On the plus side ... the weight of both rider and motor above the rear wheel can help create better traction. Combined with the more powerful rear wheel drive motor, a chain drive can also improve climbing ability, and max speed levels.

However, the downside is ... the unusually loud noise given off by the chain drive motor. The constant hum may not be to every riders liking.

Unagi Voyager Ride Modes

Source: Razor

Acceleration

5 Speed Modes

You can also toggle speed levels up or down while riding.

  • To go faster - you simply touch the top of the LCD display screen to increase speed each time until you reach maximum speed at the 5th touch.
  • To slow down - touch the bottom of the display screen to reduce speed each time until you reach lowest speed.

Razor EcoSmart Cargo Hill Climbs

Source: Razor

Hill climbs

Arguably, only the best electric scooters have the cojones for performing the steepest hill climbs. 10-15 per cent gradients tend to be the limit for the average urban e scooter.

The large, heavy-frame Razor may struggle a little but can make slightly less steep inclines at a tidy 16 km/h (10 mph). A speed near to the Glion Balto (12 km/h | 8 mph) on steeper hills - within the average e scooter range.

Razor EcoSmart Cargo Tires

Source: Razor

Tires

Razor EcoSmart Cargo is pumped up on:

  • 16in (40.6 cm) x 3in (7.6 cm) "superwide" pneumatic tires (airfilled).

There's definitely a comfortable, smooth-riding performance here - if you keep strictly to the flat pavement, and avoid uneven or wet ground. Its two spoked wheels rock an e bike vibe but may not entirely soak up every bumpy surface. And ebike tires tend to start from 20in (50.8cm) upwards.

A handy, practical feature are the front and rear fenders to prevent tires kicking up road spray. The rear fender is extended with neat see-through side-guards to protect clothing being caught in the wheel spokes

TOP TIP: There's no dual suspension system. To maintain optimal riding performance, note the required pressure (PSI) indicated on the tire sidewall, frequently check and pump up if needed.

Razor EcoSmart Cargo Brakes

Source: Razor

Brakes

Unlike the average electric scoorer built for urban riding, the Razor is only equipped with a:

  • Single rear wheel disc brake

With this type of heavy build scooter it's recommended to:

  • NOT make sudden stops
  • Use the brake lever earlier to slow down

Riding at each of the different five speed caps will also mean adapting your braking for each mode. You may need a stopping distance of at least 7- 8 meters (around 25 feet).

Factors to be aware of can be the added weight of a passenger or a full basket of heavy items.

Razor EcoSmart Cargo Lights

Source: Razor

Lights

Razor comes with a straightforward lighting system:

  • LED headlight - fixed low on the stem above the front wheel fender.
  • LED tail/brake light - rear vertical reflector which flashes when you use the brake lever.

Note: there are no automatic turn signals or reflective strips.

Battery and range

Razor Ecosmart Cargo is equipped with:

  • 46.8V|7Ah lithium-ion battery (347.1 Wh)

On a single full charge (6 hours) you should get a max range of up to 26.7 kms (16.6 miles) or up to 50 minutes of continuous run time.

However, you should expect an average cruising range of up to 24.1 kms (15 miles) - lower than Glion Balto (32 km |20 miles) - depending on rider weight, additional load, wind and other weather conditions.

Razor EcoSmart Cargo Handlebar Control

Source: Razor

Handlebar control

The U-shaped handlebars - each end fitted with a soft rib-textured rubber grip - offer a basic layout consisting:

Left handlebar

  • Brake lever
  • Simple digital display showing speed, battery level, and power mode
  • Power button
  • Headlight button

Right handlebar

  • Half-twist throttle

An inbuilt control feature will prevent you from steering the handlebars too far to the left or right.

Build quality and load capacity

Frame

The Razor is a robust, rigid steel construction in eco-themed olive green, capable of carrying up to a 136 kg (300lbs) compared to Glion Balto (115 kgs |255 lbs).

Of course, its big feature is the convertible rack and storage system, which gives you the option of an:

  • Extra, fully padded passenger seat - fixed behind the rider seat.

or you can easily install a detachable:

  • Large cargo basket - for carrying groceries or other items, and running errands.

A quick-release mechanism easily adjusts the rider's seat height and position. And the passenger also has foldaway foot rests, similar to riding pillion on a bike.

Razor EcoSmart Cargo Deck

Source: Razor

Deck

The eco theme is further highlighted with the bamboo and logo inset covering one third of a wider than average, grip tape covered deck.

A foldaway twin-legged deck stand to the rear firmly keeps the Razor upright.

Portability

Weighing in at 34.1 kg (75 lb) - more than double the Glion Balto (16.7kgs|37lbs) - Razor is definitely no lightweight.

A further issue with portability is size.

Unlike many other electric scooters, the Razor - which stands at 159cm (62.6in) x 64.5 cm (25.4 in) x 104.8 cm (41.1in) - does NOT fold down for either carrying or easy storage.

Specifications

  • Weight: 34.1 kg (75 lb)
  • Unfolded dimensions: 159cm (62.6in) x 64.5 cm (25.4 in) x 104.8 cm (41.1in)
  • Motor power (continuous): 1000 watts
  • Top speed: 32 km/h (19.9 mph)
  • Travel Distance: 26.7 kms (16.6 miles)
  • Battery capacity: 347.1 Wh
  • Battery recharge time: 6 hours
  • Max rider weight: 136 kg (300lbs)
  • Brake type: Rear wheel: mechanical disc
  • Tire type: 16in pneumatic (air-filled)
  • Built-in lights: LED headlight/Rear red tail light

In a Nutshell

Razor EcoSmart Cargo could be your e scooter of choice for those short daily trips. Where you share the riding fun on e bike-style spoked wheels and seated comfort with a passenger. Or when you need to pick up groceries, store and transport items, and run errands.

On the downside, Razor doesn't have a swappable battery like the Glion Balto for longer rides, and the chain drive motor may be just too noisy for some riders. Lack of a dual braking system, limited portability - sizeable weight, and no "foldable design" - could be an issue too.

For a striking alternative - all instant carry and zippy urban style - let's check the commuter cool Unagi Voyager...

Unagi Voyager

California-based Unagi continue their urban mobility makeovers for the e scooter generation with their latest affordable offering, Voyager.

Unagi Voyager

Performance

Speed and Acceleration

Voyager comes loaded with:

  • 2 x 250w hub motors - giving you 500 watts of continuous power.

Loaded with dual motors, Voyager beats out Glion Balto's single 500 watt motor to give a:

  • Top speed of 32 km/h (20 mph) - that's 3 mph faster than the Balto.
  • Acceleration of 24 km/h (15 mph) in around 4 seconds - a whole 10 secs faster than the Glion.

Unagi Voyager Ride Modes

Ride Modes

Voyager gives you 4 speed-capped, riding modes:

  • Mode 1 - 14 km/h (9 mph): Your ECO mode for saving battery charge on longer rides, and extending range.
  • Mode 2 - 19 km/h (12 mph): Ideal pace for the urban commute. An on-board "balanced" throttle helps you maintain your cruising speed.
  • Mode 3 - 27 km/h (15 mph): Max speed when you need it!
  • Mode 4 - 5-6 km/h (3-7 mph): Walking speed for crowded routes.

Unagi Voyager - Hill Climbs

Hill Climbs

Dual motors often give you the oomph you need to beat the hill climb. Voyager's max torque of 32Nm can handle 15-degree inclines. That's around double the gradient Glion Balto can achieve.

Voyager's averages typical 10 per cent urban gradients in around 12 seconds at nearly 17.7 km/h (11 mph).

Battery Charge and Range

Voyager comes equipped with:

  • 42V 360Wh / 10 Ah lithium-ion battery

A single, fast 3 hour charging time (half the charging time of Glion Balto) can generate:

  • 19 - 40km (12 to 25 mile) range

Unagi Voyager Batter
Battery management system (BMS)

Voyager's built-in monitoring system - designed for low maintenance scootering - prevents:

  • Overheating
  • Short circuits
  • Undervoltage/Overcurrent
  • Overcharge/Discharge
  • Auto-sleep

Unagi Voyager Honeycomb Tires

Tires

Unagi scooters are well-known for their honeycomb tires - an unique hybrid of solid and pneumatic tire, measuring:

  • 7.5 inch (19 cm) (Diameter) x 1.6 in (4.0cms) (Width)

The "honeycomb" is a system of air pockets around the edge of the entire wheel, designed to give you:

  • Greater structural integrity - less tire distortion during tight maneuvres and better suspension than solid tires.
  • Lower rolling resistance - to moving forward.
  • Extended range - more battery charge stored.
  • Reduced risk of a flat.
  • Greater shock absorption - for a smoother ride.

Unagi Voyager Brakes

Brakes

Voyager comes equipped with:

  • Dual electronic motor brakes - on front and rear wheels.

Plus, a rear fender brake for a firm assist to full stops. With no jarring wheel locks when braking on flat ground.

Typical on-road braking for this Unagi model:

  • 5.5 m (16.9 feet) - for both electronic and foot brake.
  • 7.7 m (25 feet) - electronic brakes only - well under Glion Balto at 9.7 meters | 32 feet.

Unagi Voyager Lights

Lights

Visibility at all times is essential - for both you, other road users and pedestrians. Lights are not only for night rides!

Unagi have given Voyager :

  • 1.8 LED dual, flush-mounted, headlights.
  • Red LED light, low-mounted on the scooter rear fender.

plus

  • Red reflector 'flashes' on front and rear wheel forks.

The headlight is also mounted in front of the handlebars at the highest point on the stem, for:

  • Wider illumination of the road ahead

Lights should always be turned on early morning, after dusk, and in reduced daylight.

Unagi Voyager Handlebar

Handlebar control

Unagi redefines ergonomic handlebar design for not only looking good but feeling good to touch, too. Voyager's control centre is seamlessly formed from a single casting of magnesium alloy, one third lighter than aluminum.

  • Left handlebar: Brake paddle and horn
  • Right handlebar: Throttle paddle and riding mode

Handlebar centre: Flush-mounted LED display

At a glance you can also instantly see:

  • Current speed
  • Motor status
  • Dual motor mode
  • Distance travelled - see Smart App below
  • Battery level
  • LED headlight on/off

Unagi Voyager Smart app

Smart app

The iOS and Android smart app enables you to:

  • Lock and unlock scooter wheels
  • Precisely calculate remaining battery life ("Distance to Empty" feature) - by rider weight and 'ride' mode.

How to connect Voyager to Unagi Smart Connect app

Build quality and load capacity

Unagi Voyager Frame

Frame

Voyager's high-strength and lightweight frame is made from carbon fiber, aluminum and magnesium alloy.

Producing a strength-weight ratio capable of typical max load capacity of up to 100kgs (220 lbs) 'Invisible' frame supports reinforce typical stress points.

Unagi Voyager Colours

Unagi continue to also lead the way in smart color makeovers. Voyager offers FOUR totally new cool urban shades to choose from:

  • Deep Cobalt (blue)
  • Cool Mist (green)
  • Latte (tan)
  • Matt Black

Unagi Voyager Deck

Deck

Voyager sports a slimline deck, ideal for short commutes and trips around the block:

  • 47cms (18.5 in) x 13.5cms (5.5 in) - longer than Glion Balto by 1 inch.

Standing room is generally larger than a typical scooter deck. And subtly tapered with a tough, rubber-grip embedded across its entire surface.

Ground clearance is 8.3cms (3.3 ins) with left-hand side kickstand, neatly folding away when not in use.

Unagi Voyager Potability

Portability

Voyager weighs in at an easy, carry in your hand 13.4kgs (29.6 lbs), which is easily lighter than Glion Balto - by more than 3kgs (7lbs).

Unagi scooters are also lighter than many other commuter scooters. Offering max portability for quick commutes on foot and by public transit.

Voyager also has a fast-action folding and locking mechanism.

Unagi Voyager Locking Mechanism

In a one-flick thumb slide - combined with a 90 degree stem angle - Voyager instantly folds down to:

  • 91 cm (37 in) x 40 cm (16in) x 38 cm (15 in).

An easy comfortable size for carrying up stairs, escalator, and storing neatly away in your car trunk, at the office or in your home.

Specifications

  • Weight: 13.4kgs (29.6 lbs)
  • Folded dimensions: 96 cm (37.8 in) x 42 cm (16.4in) x 38 cm (15 in)
  • Motor power: 1000 W (max)| 500 W (continuous)
  • Top speed: 32 km/h (20 mph)
  • Travel distance: 19.3 - 40.2kms (12 to 25 miles)
  • Battery capacity: 768Wh
  • Battery recharge time: 3 hours
  • Max rider weight: 100kgs (220 lbs)
  • Brake type: Dual electronic + rear, foot brake assist.
  • Tire type: 7.5 inch solid rubber
  • On-board lights: Dual front LED and Rear light red LED
  • Water resistance: IP54 (water spray from all directions, dust and small particles)

Unagi Scooters

In a nutshell

Voyager's upgraded dual 500 watt motors and 360Wh battery deliver an all-round excellent performance compared to many other scooters at a similar price.

Unagi's attention to fine design ergonomics ensures satisfying handlebar control. A micromobility freedom with double the range at half the energy-charging time.

Every ride is a cool, fun journey of unlimited possibilities in the urban space.

Join the Unagi community for "Effortless personal transportation".

Discover how exclusive scootering takes you to another level.

Sign up HERE to the Unagi All-Access Subscription Program.


Daniel Foley
Daniel Foley

Daniel tests all the latest e-scooters and currently enjoys the Unagi Voyager as a daily driver for it's light weight, good range, and stylish look.

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